The backpacking season has begun (if there even is officially a backpacking season?) so I figure it’s time to share some essential tips for a backpacking trip through Europe. Some of these tips I learned before I left for my European backpacking adventure and others I learned the hard way. Here are quick tips to ensure you are prepared for your trip backpacking Europe.
Use packing cubes
This is a tip that has been gaining popularity but some people still haven’t yet joined us packing cube fanatics. These nifty cubes are essential for keeping organized while on vacation, especially if you are living out of a backpack which can make the packing and organizing process significantly more difficult.
Utilize Google Maps offline
If you haven’t already heard, Google Maps has an offline feature that allows you to download selected areas that you can use with absolutely no connection. Perfect for those with limited or no data. Now that everyone has phones in their pocket 24/7 it can be difficult to find physical maps, not to mention they take up precious space. So do yourself a favor and download each city’s map while you have access to the internet.
Get a European sim card
Even with access to offline Google Maps buying a European sim card can be a lifesaver. Running around trying to find WiFi to contact someone can get old quickly. Just get a prepaid sim card that can be topped up when needed. Ensure your sim card can be used in all of the countries you are traveling to or at least has a country plan that allows limited uses in some countries.
Get a manicure
Before I left for my trip I made sure to make a stop at my nail salon to get gel nail polish. The manicure lasted perfectly for three weeks, as gel nail polish tends to last longer than a normal manicure. Of course, Europe also has nail salons all over so you can always get a touch-up when the time comes. This tip will leave you feeling a little more put together in any situation.
Unless you plan to literally have your backpack on your entire trip (which would make the whole experience very difficult, to say the least) there is a large amount of time you will be spending away from your belongings. In order to both have peace of mind as well as avoid any frustrating situations involving lost belongings it is key that you bring a couple of locks.